The sweat dripped off his head and onto the ground as he gazed at the starting line of the 200m race. He knew that a repeat state title depended on the outcome of this race. He had already told his contestant he had to at least place fourth.

As the runners were called to their marks, he watched anxiously as the WO-S sophomore inched into his blocks.

When the starter called, “Set!” Coach Toby Foreman dropped his head as to not watch the start of the race. The gun sounded and he looked up. In his heart, he knew that his runner in lane 7 would medal. Before Justin Thomas crossed the finish line in second place, Foreman was already making his way to the awards stand.

“When he didn’t false start, I knew that we were in good shape,” Foreman said. “When he hit the back stretch sprinting, I knew we had won the whole thing.”

Because of his back to back state track titles, Foreman was chosen by the National Federation of State High School Coaches as the 2010 Coach of the Year at the state level for Boys Track and Field. The honor, as great as it is, can not compare to the memories that were made along the way.

For Foreman, winning the first state title was much more suspenseful than the second. With a year full of obstacles such as Hurricane Ike and the Swine Flu, it was only fitting that Foreman, along with the rest of the track team, would have to wait until the very last race of the day to know if they would take home the state title in June of 2009. In fact, it wasn’t until the last 200m of the mile relay that the title was for sure going to Foreman and his team.

“This past year, we took care of business on our own and didn’t have to wait for the outcome,” Foreman said.

Foreman, who ran track in high school for WO-S, credits his and his teams’ accomplishments to several things.

“We have talented people here that run track but more than that, people that are willing to work,” Foreman said. “A lot of schools have talent but they just don’t have the work ethic that we do.”

But he doesn’t just credit his track team with winning. Many people made up the support system that helped his team bring home the gold twice from Austin.

“There’s no way we could have the success we do without the support of the administrators, community, parents and long time teachers such as Marvin Hill, Ken Wernig, Susan Kazmar, Mike Washburn, Mary Ann Jaynes, Bettie Curtis and a great high school support staff,” Foreman said.

With all of the hardware that has been brought back to Orange while Foreman has been the head track coach, he says his biggest fulfillment comes in helping his athletes graduate and get into college.

Foreman, who is also the offensive coordinator, has helped many get into college who might not have had the chance otherwise. Not only has he helped some get into Division 1 colleges, he has been instrumental in getting football and track athletes into junior colleges as well.

“I’ve been a part of helping 20 or 30 kids get into school,” Foreman said. “Not only do we monitor their grades and keep up with their test scores, we also promote kids to different colleges.”

And though it may seem to many who see Foreman around the school that football and track are the only things on his mind, he also spends time during the day preparing for his math classes and preparing his students for the upcoming TAKS test.

“I think this is a great honor for Toby,” Coach Mark Foreman, his father, said. “But I think the proudest I have been of him is when I was stopped in Walmart last year and told by two parents that he had worked extra with their children to help them pass the TAKS test. As in my career, these things, most of the time, far outweigh the championships and victories in athletics.”

This track season will be dedicated to former track member, Reggie Garrett. Garrett was a regional qualifier in the discus last year, placing second with a toss of 129’07.” The new uniforms will have 112% on the sleeve in his honor.

According to Foreman, this track season should also be one to watch.

“We should have a lot of success in the relays, sprints and hurdles. This season will be centered around Phillip Jones who already has 5 medals from the state track meets going into his senior year,” Foreman said. “We have several returners back on relays as well as several alternates. This is the most depth on the track team that we’ve had and is the first year that I’ve had a mile relay team that will have a legitimate chance to make it to Austin.”

So, for the 2010 Track Coach of the Year, the days ahead look bright, whether there is sunshine or not.

Congratulations to Head Track Coach Toby Foreman from The Record! You make Orange, Texas proud!